tv Headline News RT January 14, 2014 3:00am-3:30am EST
mock executions electrocution and a taste for breeding detainees these are just some of the accusations based on the british military over the iraq war with the international criminal court now urged to investigate. national security any fish and see an independent study finds the u.s. spy agency has been grossly exaggerating the effectiveness of dragnet data collection and combat in terrorism. and egyptians vote on a new draft constitution the third in three years as the military backed government seeks popular legitimacy after crushing the muslim brotherhood.
you're watching international live from our moscow studios i'm lindsey france thanks for joining me the iraq war continues to haunt the u.k. with lawyers representing hundreds of detainees at that conflict now saying the british government is ultimately responsible for torture so brutal and amounts to sadism their testimonies have been submitted to the international criminal court but as our tears polly boyko reports the u.k. is determined to stop any investigation in its tracks. up until now the international criminal court at the hague had mostly tried to african dictators and tyrants but the i.c.c. has been asked to investigate thousands of allegations of war crimes committed by british forces in iraq a two hundred and fifty page dossier presented by a human rights organization and a british law firm contains allegations of beatings of electrocution smoke
executions and sexual assault committed by u.k. forces and according to the also as of this report the finger of blame extends to the very heart of the british government at the time so the head of the british army the former defense secretary and the former defense minister could face prosecution for what this dossier calls systemic war crimes there are many hundreds of cases where the people have been interviewed in the provided reports about this abuse and it varies from what people might think are. relatively mundane examples of abuse to really quite appalling physical they're put says that british military commanders knew that their forces were committing war crimes and moreover that their civilian superiors consciously ignored such information at their disposal but the u.k. foreign secretary william hague has already firmly rejected the suggestion that
those at the top here in westminster knew what was taking place on the ground in iraq we reject allegations of systematic abuse but whether all substantiated allegations of things going wrong these things have been or are being investigated that does not require references to the international criminal court the position of the british government as culturally been or were doing enough the point of this is simply that they still haven't done enough there are right now. at the international criminal court two heads of state one of them the sitting head of state of kenya and the other the former head of state of cold war they're both on trial at the international criminal court not for getting their hands bloody they didn't do anything themselves but people under their authority or people they should have controlled were committing the crimes so if it's good enough for the african countries it should be good enough for the u.k. to the international criminal court has come under increasing pressure to act
against war crimes committed by western countries it's now up to the prosecutor at the i.c.c. to go through the claims of abuse and to decide whether to call high ranking british officials into the dock at the hague probably boy artsy. extracts from the jail so you have been made public but most of the documents are being kept under wraps still the witness accounts that have come to life so far are alarming now among the abuses reported are beatings electrocutions various kinds of sexual humiliation and even outright rape family members of inmates were allegedly threatened by british troops and in at least one case actually harmed such as one man who described how after being beaten his eight year old son was brought in and also attacked by an officer another witness alleged that during an interrogation soldiers threatened to rape his sister and arrest his elderly parents let's hear now from andrea suhler legal advisor at the european center for constitutional
constitutional and human rights mr schuller your organization helped compile this report just how damning is it. it's very damning and the difference is that. the evidence shows that it's not only about individual one single cases and incidents it's really a systematic pattern of reparative which a curate and finding in our report or communication to the i.c.c. it's more as and single isolated incidents where the u.k. says it's already investigating all the accusations and the submission to the i.c.c. is needless why then was it filed. the u.k. is investigating some single incidents they have some public inquiries but they all don't bloke into a systematic pattern of abuse which also amounts to a higher level of reasons of command chain and that's
a difference which is not under investigation in the u.k. so far. after ten years since that first incidents happen now it's time for the i.c.c. to take these high level cases up well let's talk about the evidence that the report alleges as you say systematic abuse that top brass were aware of or should have been aware of how sure are you of this. what already in two thousand and four there were reports by the international committee of the red cross by amnesty international about abuses and mistreatment of detainees in iraq by british forces already in two thousand and six the prosecutor of the international criminal court found that there are some incidents. which amount to war crimes and even. into two thousand and eight it continued so this shows that there were already quite early allegations which haven't been followed up by as
a u.k. officials to prevent. future or. future torture between two thousand and six and two thousand and eight for example so that was public knowledge since two thousand and four two thousand and six ok there have been a number of attempts to bring the u.k. military to account for its actions in iraq not have worked what makes you think this will fare any different. what we documented many more cases than were submitted before to the international criminal court or to other courts. it's now is the time because the u.k. had ten years to investigate to prosecute the direct perpetrators but also the higher ups in the u.k. ten years and there are still hardly any prosecutions in the country so now it's simply the time that international courts have to step in well there are
also you know political considerations here regardless of guilt do you believe the u.k. would actually allow its top officials to be prosecuted. the u.k. rectified the rome statute and they are under the same obligations as any other states and that also includes to cooperate with the court and so it's still left to chance to prosecutes of people themself in the country but if they don't do so they have to cooperate with the international criminal court the i.c.c. has a reputation for going after africans what it dare go against a european power such as britain. it's the time now also for the i.c.c. after also ten years in its existence to broaden its of focus not only on africa but also on the u.k. but also in states like colombia. where crimes have been committed and where similar situations are cured like the african states and the i.c.c.
with the new prosecutor since last year it's also now under obligation to look into other regions also worlds and conflicts were serious crimes have been committed. ok let's talk about the court's authority how much does it actually have without ratification from key powers including the united states russia and china. the court has more than one hundred twenty member states by now and that means already on the territory of one hundred twenty states crimes can be investigated and prosecuted by the courts so even if that is the big states you just mentioned commit crimes in other states which have been rectified it's the rome statute they would also come under investigation and that shows that. if more and more states sign and ratified the statute more and more. the big powers are under pressure to to react to the jurisdictions that caught my tariff if they.
commit crimes abroad in other countries but of course we still hope that also is a statute will be ratified by actually all u.n. member states including the us russia and india brazil and many more ok andrea stroller legal adviser to the european center for constitutional and human rights thank you very much for joining us. thank you. the u.s. national security agency has gone to a staggering lengths to hoard the private data of millions of people but an independent study now suggests all that information failed to produce the results the government help for parties were important i explained. when edward snowden first revealed the u.s. government's indiscriminate collection of every american's phone data u.s. president barack obama defended the program insisting that dozens of threats around
the world have been a bit courtesy of the national security agency and i say chief general keith alexander claimed metadata collection has toward it before different terrorism related activities post nine eleven now unfortunately for the white house a new study shows that the numbers they're using well they've been slightly inflated because that analysis of two hundred and twenty five terrorism related cases in the u.s. since the september eleventh attack has found that the n.s.a.'s program has provided evidence for only one case now the study by the national based nonprofit new american foundation has concluded the bulk collection of data by the n.s.a. has had no discernible impact on preventing acts of terrorism researchers found that in the majority of post nine eleven terrorism related cases tips or evidence actually came from traditional law enforcement and investigative methods now these
findings come as president obama is preparing to address the nation friday outlining his proposals to change intelligence operations and oversight geo political analyst eric draitser doesn't expect the president's promises to equate into significant action i think that the reality is that what we're looking at is a vast infrastructure with billions of dollars invested in it over the course of multiple decades so whatever obama might be able to say politically using whatever rhetorical cover he needs the reality is that the infrastructure is not going anywhere the scaling back is only going to be superficial because as we know the surveillance program itself is all pervasive it goes to hardware it goes to software it goes to the companies themselves the servers the the cables themselves so as. they said it is a closed system that they've created so for obama to be able to say oh well i can scale back this system this is merely for public consumption just last month a task force appointed by the president himself also concluded that the n.s.a.'s
counterterrorism programs are not essential to preventing attacks reporting from new york r.t. with reputations of stake the west threatens to cut support for syria's rebel government if it refuses to attend peace talks the opposition is a step ahead calling the bluff and saying that between hard line islamists and the regime there is no other choice all report on the upcoming geneva peace talks right around the corner. with over two hundred thousand police on the streets to provide security of the referendum on a new constitution for egypt has got off to a fiery start just before polling stations open their doors a bomb went off in a cairo courthouse no injuries were reported a yes vote on the constitution would cement the authority of the military backed interim government it replaced the islamist president mohamed morsi after he was ousted in a coup last summer true reports on the challenges and perils facing egypt.
willet gyptian za heading to polling stations once again to vote on a new constitution if it gets a yes from the people that would mean egypt's seen three constitutions and possibly three presidents in as many years now people are voting on an amended version of a two thousand and twelve constitution which was thrown out by egypt's military generals after they overthrew is the most president mohamed morsy into lie since then the government has launched a bloody crackdown on mr morsy supporters and also his grip the base and both of his which was a terrorist organization on christmas day blamed for a spike in terror attacks it's the situation that's led the whole country to be on tenterhooks today as the police and the army are being stationed the polling stations preempting violence from the government hardline groups meanwhile human rights organizations have expressed dismay at the state of freedoms here in the country particularly after seven members of a strong egypt party were initially in support of the military where we rested for
putting up posters calling for a no vote in the referendum the streets here were literally a wash vote yes the constitution post is. being screened on radio and t.v. stations back to back however no very campaign is barely visible meanwhile the missing brother heads and that support is a calling for a boycott now a high turnout and a yes vote is essential for the government as this would be the start of approval from the people for the roadmap that egypt's generals made back in july and it could pave the way for armed forces chief general abdel fattah el-sisi to become president now critics say that there are many articles inside the constitution the current constitution which people are voting on which would in fact strengthen military power over civilian governments leaving little hope for a democratic and peaceful future for egypt by alaskans are a blogger and journalist working out of cairo says a language in the constitution would provide legal and political immunity for the military. although there are
a lot of egyptians that are really pro this constitution and they really seek stability there's very little chance that this constitution will do so and mostly because this vote on the constitution isn't a vote on the constitution itself but on a plethora of other factors including the muslim brotherhood whether they were people want them back for not. general sisi. whether people want him as president or not and then the last thing it's about is the actual constitution surely serves the army at this point they want to be protected against any kind of accountability for anything they've done it's still valid to to see that even if there is a democratic president as long as the army is in power and they have that much power and autonomy that they can choose pick and choose who stays on and who leaves and i don't think the const the next constitution addresses that. no growth and no clear way out france is scrambling for economic answers and its president gets the
cartoon treatment as he pedals like crazy to get things back on track we've got the latest on his new low tax approach coming up in the program. and when your motherland just doesn't love you back up ahead lothian limbo for all those who lived their whole lives there with state less passports that stripped them of the privileges enjoyed by ordinary set us and. economic down in the final. days. and the rest because i. believe we.
have you with us here on our teacher day on research on. the front economic ship appears to be dead in the water and that's even compared to what struggling european neighbors it's fizzes it's a situation rather that's left the pro tax president scrambling for a way to spur growth and he looks ready to make a surprising political u.
turn to do it. thank you so just like this way about the world this video clip mocks francois lawns tax policies which are among the major reason this has become the least popular president in france as more than history though he couldn't hold on to more towards the regional food together with belgium france's tax grab is the highest in the euro zone the one thing to do but say it was a good way to head for. the last two hours french are wide open to food taxes whether two thirds of the country's population feels top says i don't write eighty per cent look the president's economic policy is misguided and inefficient gianluca is among those eighty percent and entrepreneur he was forced to close his business down after taxes became too big to bear to sell second if you're sick this is a vicious circle with my business has stopped working which means i can to provide
jobs for others and i can pay taxes to my country to help its development it's like everything falls apart whether the current taxation policy was part of the fine men strategy chosen by the french government to fight economic crisis but almost two years later critics say it simply hasn't worked the country's credit rating has been caught the unemployment level all those table recently is still at its highest in almost sixteen years and for twenty fourteen the european commission for costs just zero point nine percent g.d.p. growth in france against one point seven percent in germany and two point two percent in britain people and businesses alike of oh my god another tax and another it's not that they're too high but there are too many and a combination of all these taxes makes it really heavy taxes today really break an economy and. it seems that's also finally beginning to dawn on the country's leader
examples of new rules all rules taxes big. game have to have a usually known for very optimistic speech in his new year address. sounded rather concerned. the economic crisis turned out to be longer and deeper than we could have predicted. the socialist leader pledged some truly liberal changes such as cutting labor costs and public spending making people talk about a new all loaned and new hopes of the country's recovery but critics are still vocal as they see long as plan is short on details and some are afraid it could simply be too little too late. raef nationality from france. britain and the united states are reportedly threatening to cut support for the syrian opposition unless it agrees to attend peace talks next week but the syrian national coalition insists that with the rebels still on the one hand and assad's
regime on the other there is no one else for the west to deal with meanwhile the top diplomats of russia and the united states along with the u.n. special envoy to syria have met to hammer out a roadmap for the peace talks at the meeting in paris they agreed that the three year civil war cannot be resolved through military means but also blamed both the rebels and the regime for the atrocities committed in syria but on the issue of whether to include iran in the geneva peace talks next week washington is sending mixed signals. i think we would welcome participation of around is coming to participate for the purposes of the conference but iran has yet to state whether or not it supports implementing the geneva one communique which calls for nothing more than the mutual consent of the parties to a transitional governing process to make peace and we ask around i invite around
today to join the community of nations the thirty nations that are already prepared to come and be a constructive partner for peace that's the invitation he was simply stating that there are ways around could show the world that they want to see a positive outcome and if they did so obviously that would mean that if they wanted to play a role in geneva two on the sidelines we would look more favorably on that but certainly no one was indicating an openness to inviting them are these are things that if they do they would definitely be invited there are just things that they could do to show that they want to effect a positive outcome but again we have no indication they're going to geneva two as in how many days so i think really it is that it's probably very slow. in mid east analyst told us that all powers with influence in the region should be invited. seeing contradictory signals and obviously the u.s. is undecided on this issue that is very unfortunate because it sends the wrong
signal to iran that we even have adverse consequence so that with respect to confidence mean being on the nuclear issue so i think the united states should stop this self-contradiction sin then invitation through the u.n. to iran so that all the parties that stake in this conflict could participate and bring an end to this tragic catastrophe conflict. meanwhile the situation in syria is growing more chaotic by the day rebel factions are now in all out war with each other with almost seven hundred opposition fighters killed in just over a week what's worse the balance of power is quickly turning away from the relative moderates and in favor of al-qaeda one of the most notorious of those is the islamic state of iraq and the levant it began a campaign called explanation filth which targets everyone opposed to it especially moderate rebels among the methods used by the jihadists are executions bombings in
forstmann of sharia law and the capturing of those who do not share their beliefs the group is so brutal that even his leadership has denounced it it now controls chunks of syria and iraq that are larger than portugal can see here the areas in black would love of course to hear your thoughts on the geneva two conference you can have your say any time out in your comments on r.t. dot com or by voting in the poll we've got running there. and as the saying goes there's no place like home but for some there's no country that can be called by that name hundreds of thousands of people in latvia have so-called alien passports even though they've never lived anywhere else and naturalization test intended for immigrants is the only way for them to get equal rights with all citizens artist paul scott investigates. but at the moment norms citizens have limited rights we can't vote can't occupy government positions or be policeman or lawyers in total there are ninety differences in november
alexander invited un secretary general ban ki-moon to libya for a congress on the issue the invite was politely declined. because then you know there are around three hundred thousand of us and i'm one of them here's my passport it's an alien passport. when the soviet union collapsed latvia only gay full citizenship to people and their descendants who had lived in the country prior to nine hundred forty when it became a soviet republic that was around fifty two percent of the population everyone else was classed as a non-citizen today one in seven people are considered alien canady is one of those affected he was born in latvia and although his mother is latvian because his father moved to the country after nine hundred forty cannot it was denied citizenship he eventually went through the process of naturalization when he was
twenty two years old how did it make you feel having to go through that process despite the fact as you say you were born in this country well does your mother love you right that's the same if she does that you feel good and if it doesn't you feel a bit about and insulted the process of naturalisation attests noncitizens on their knowledge of latvian history culture and language many feel they're hostages to history claiming the latvian government are using them to avenge the past but it's not just a moral issue it could also be economic benefits to ending this policy if that three hundred thousand people will be back into political and economical life will be a very good feel for the country to united in to finally move on further because we always look back into history who are trying to go further. into european union and secure a zone and so on but we still had its turn back those fighting for their rights
acknowledged they have a long way to go before they win the argument to say they're prepared to take their case step by step. r.t. latvia now it's a grand that feeds billions of people and it's now at the center of a scandal over attempts to genetically altered it coming up on our golden rice. because you don't states is the big dog the only hyper power and the cultural driving force of globalization it takes a lot of flack i mean hey globalization means the whole world gets hollywood and hot dogs and not the other way around so let's take a break from the negativity and talk about something truly amazing about america and as a guy who lives in moscow i could say that the constitution of the united states is something truly amazing in russia there is constant talk about needing a new national idea
a new ideology or political theory or big changes to the russian constitution and so on and it's hard for people in america understand this but twice in the twentieth century the system that russians gave their lives for collapsed and the current constitution was written quickly after a period of violence and said collapse not after glorious victory now you see why people here are exactly memorizing amendments and founding fathers quotes here in america there are debates between liberals and conservatives but almost everyone believes the constitution and it is america's greatest strength there is a national idea that is a sacred document with a list of rules as almost universally agreed upon everyone with half a brain on the street but sadly not in congress knows when something is against the constitution or should i see against america near universal belief in the constitution is actually something truly exceptional about america but that's just my opinion.